East Palace, West Palace

East Palace, West Palace
East Palace, West Palace
Traditional 東宮西宮
Simplified 东宫西宫
Mandarin Dōng Gōng Xī Gōng
Directed by Zhang Yuan
Produced by Christophe Jung
Christophe Ménager
Zhang Yuan
Willy Tsao
Written by Wang Xiaobo
Zhang Yuan
Starring Si Han
Hu Jun
Zhao Wei
Music by Xiang Min
Cinematography Zhang Jian
Editing by Vincent Lévy
Distributed by International:
Fortissimo Films
United States:
Strand Releasing
Release date(s) Mar del Plata:
November 1996
May 9, 1997
United States:
July 24, 1998
Running time 94 minutes
Country China
Language Mandarin

East Palace, West Palace (Dong gong xi gong) is a 1996 Chinese film directed by Zhang Yuan starring Hu Jun, Si Han. It is also known as Behind the Forbidden City or Behind the Palace Gates.[1]

East Palace, West Palace is the first Mainland Chinese movie with an explicitly homosexual theme. The title of the movie derives from the two parks near the Forbidden City - the East Palace and the West Palace. The two parks, specifically their public washrooms, are notorious for being places of congregation for the homosexuals in Beijing during the night.[2]

The film was shot in the spring of 1996, when it was smuggled out of China for post-production in France.[3] It premiered at the Mar del Plata Film Festival in Argentina in November 1996 and at the 1997 Cannes Film Festival as part of the Un Certain Regard competition.[4][5]



  • Si Han as A-Lan, the young gay man picked up by the police one night in Beijing.
  • Hu Jun as Xiao Shi, the conflicted police officer who conducts A-Lan's interrogation.

See also


External links

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